This week’s Book Blogger Hop question: Do you have any advice for new bloggers?
I’ll give you the same advice I give everyone I know who’s considering starting a blog: have a plan. Plan your content, and plan your schedule. I don’t mean you have to have every blog post already formulated, of course, but know what kind of content you want to write about (and make sure it’s something you can generate a lot of content around) and know how often you want to blog.
When I started this blog, I committed to two book reviews every week, and I’ve stuck to that for four years. I knew how much I read (and have read) and knew that I’d be able to generate content around two books every week. I honestly don’t think there’s any other topic I could manage that kind of volume of content around! But for me, there are always new books (or a loooong list of old ones), so that always gives me something new to write about.
Blogging is just like any other writing. You have to make it happen. If you decide to write whenever inspiration strikes…well, you might be different, but for me, I find strikes of inspiration can be few and far between, especially if I’m not consciously striving towards producing a certain amount of content on a regular schedule. When I started blogging, I also thought I’d do “Ruminations” posts on writing topics whenever the inspiration appeared…and those posts have been pretty few and far between!
Two book reviews per week may not be the right schedule or content for you–but know what schedule and content will be right, before you start blogging.
Other bloggers–what kind of advice would you give?
7 thoughts on “Blog Hop: Starting a Blog?”
Solid advice – yours and your commenters. As a blog reader who has never tried to start a blog I would say the worst thing is to blog very haphazardly. You will surely lose your audience very quickly that way.
And if you’re going to blog about your personal life, it better be interesting rather than just a diary full of ruminations that aren’t focused on anything. One of the best I’ve ever read and still follow is The Bold Soul by Lisa Taylor Huff, who moved to Paris from New Jersey several years ago and has blogged about her adventures ever since. She’s at http://www.theboldsoul.lisataylorhuff.com. She writes about life in Paris, combining travel posts with personal stories of life as an expat.
I like your style because you stick to your mission and write about what’s of interest to your readers, not veering off to different topics. People know what they will get when they come to your blog for book reviews.
I couldn’t agree more. It’s like figuring out what you want and what drives you to be productive 🙂
Two post a week that have actual content; be they reviews or a meme that requires more than copy paste. That is pretty good plan. After that get involved. This is a community that keeps giving, socialize with other bloggers and your own blog only gets stronger.
Having a plan and being organized is definitely good advice. I actually don’t plan how many reviews I will post because I really can’t predict. 🙂 Great you stuck to your plan.
My advice is in my link below, and I think having fun is also a big part of book blogging. 🙂
ENJOY your weekend.
My Blog Hop Answer
I think your advice is good, although I would add that it may take some time to figure out a reasonable schedule. I started out trying to post two or three times a week, but couldn’t keep up, so I committed to once a week plus some additional times when I could manage it, and I am happy with that. You can’t necessarily tell before you start how much time it’s going to take, so I wouldn’t feel bad about starting out with one plan and letting experience shape it into another, if necessary.
I would also add that you can’t expect people to find your blog without doing anything to reach out. Commenting, participating in events, etc. are an opportunity to meet other bloggers and build community — if one keeps in mind the “be true to yourself” caveat, and is sincere in one’s interactions.
I think I’ve been blogging about 4 years also, but I’m nowhere near as consistent. Some weeks I’ll have one review, sometimes 3, and occasionally I’ll skip a week. But I do agree that you need to start off with a plan for what kind of content you want and a general idea of how often you plan to post–and be ready to commit to that.
Be true to yourself, that’s what I’d say. Don’t try to speak with somebody else’s voice or it’ll come over as false and contrived. Or if you do, do it with a tongue in your cheek, and do it with a distinctive style.
But all that advice is pointless unless you know who you’re writing it for. Yourself? Don’t care who reads or ‘likes’ it or comments on it? Then advice is irrelevant and impertinent. But if you want an audience of more than one — yourself — then the advice could be (I hope) relevant and pertinent.